It’s not supposed to be this way. The rain I mean. The sullen, gray skies belong in November, not now, not here, not in October. The October rain is cold and steady. The day is morose and dark. Not a sad day but a melancholy mood could set in if I were not careful. The October rain comes too early; the world outside seems out-of-step and incongruent with the world inside — my mind.
I think we could all let the little things carry us off to dark corners where we don’t like to be. I am sure we all do it although few of us, I think, do it intentionally. I hear the rhythm of rain pounding on the window from which I’ve observed many sunny, unseasonably warm, October days recently. But the seasons, like life, are a balance of good and bad, happy and sad, pleasure and pain, and beginnings and endings. No season goes gently into its good night. No person should go gently into that good night. I will not, I hope.
The rain feels tiny sabers of ice as it stabs at my summer-acclimated skin. I’m not, ready for this. Not ready for the pounding November gales and chilling rain that cuts my skin and slices down into my bones. I’m not ready. But, in the grand scheme of seasons, and life, what will come will come. Although sometimes I won’t be ready for what tomorrow brings, it has always been this way. The older I get the more aware of this I become.
Summer has come and gone but it did not go gentle into that good night. It stayed well into October this year. The sunny, hot, humid days and warm, muggy nights stayed well into October this year. But, it stayed beyond its time. Summer fought a valiant fight for life – right up to the end. But, in the end, it lost to a cold, biting October rain. Or did it? Maybe it really didn’t lose at all. Maybe it was time for it to go. Summer was out-of-season and out-of-place. It didn’t belong here anymore. It has lost its purpose. The crops were grown, the trees were tired, and the flowers were dying. Autumn needed to be born and summer needed to die. It just the cycle of the seasons – it’s just the cycle of life.
The October rain is pounding on my window and the skies are leaden and full of gloom. It’s funny but now that the sun has gone away, I cannot remember what a sunny day looks like. I can visualize it, but I can’t “feel” it. The visualization that I have of of sunny day isn’t nearly as good as a sunny day, I’m sure of that. I have a strange way of thinking. For some reason this reminds me that when we are ill we cannot quite remember what it feels like to be well. And when we are well, we can’t quite remember what it feels like to be sick. We know for sure we don’t want to be sick, but we can’t remember how bad it felt. Something seems to be trying to keep us in the present and focused on this moment. Maybe that’s a good thing. All we have for sure is now.
The October rain will eventually end and the sun will come back again. And though summer has died it will be born again when it is time for it to be again. And, now I won’t remember what summer felt like, but I’ll enjoy the rain today – as cold and heartless as it may be. I’m going to put on my rain gear and go for a walk in the wind and the rain. Tomorrow when the sun shines I won’t remember exactly how the rain sounded or how the icy rain felt on my face – so tomorrow I will enjoy the sun and the autumn trees and remember a summer that fought so hard to stay alive deep into October.
Like the seasons, we all have our time. We need to make the best of it. There are things that are important and things that are not – and sometimes it is not easy for us to tell the difference. If you don’t believe that, look around you. Observe the world you live in and look at what the priorities seem to be. It seems everyone wants to be young as long as they can, even when they are old. Most people do not want to go gentle into that good night of old age. To be young is to be envied in our world. But youth like summer fades into the autumn of middle-age and then the autumn fades into the winter of old age. To keep wishing for youth is as futile as wishing for summer on a bitter January day – or wishing for sun while walking in the unrelenting October rain.
It’s hard to live within ourselves. So many things try to tug us one way or the other. To know what is important and what is not is not an easy thing, no matter how easy it sounds. When our season turns to winter and we can no longer remember what the warm, summer sun felt like on our skin, it seems to me we would be better off to accept the winter and enjoy it while we can – because like the October rain – it will not be with us very long.
All of us are in some season of life. Some of us are in the springtime of life, and others are in the winter of life, and the rest of us are somewhere in between. But, in the end it will not matter how much money we made or what we accomplished, the only thing that will matter is how much we were loved by others. When our winter comes and we rage against the dying of the light, the only way we will ever see another spring is in the memory of those who loved us.
The October rain is cold. Its icy fingers touch my summer skin, chilling me. The dark and melancholy October sky took summer away. But, I love the October rain – it will make tomorrow’s sun feel all the warmer and the autumn trees look all the brighter. Though I think I will, I know I won’t remember exactly what these icy drops of rain felt like. This moment in time is the only moment I can experience. Memories fade and are colored by the now, they will never be exactly the way they really were. Tomorrow remains unknown and when tomorrow comes it will be today.
The October rain, driven by a chilly wind, splatters hard on my face. It stings. I walk through the October rain, toward an unknown tomorrow – enjoying this moment on a dark and rainy October day. Yesterday is miles behind me and tomorrow is miles away. This moment is a gift and I am thankful for it.